Edinburgh Festivals review of RHEFP

Richard Herring's Edinburgh Fringe Podcast

Written by Tom Farrington | 11 August 2011

One of the easier aspects of reviewing a continually changing show that can (mostly) be downloaded for free is that spoilers arenÂ’t really a problem, though it does mean I canÂ’t guarantee the daily assemblage of guests will make you laugh as much as Glen Wool and Simon Munnery did me. What I can guarantee is that Richard Herring will work harder for your laughs than any comedian IÂ’ve seen, and heÂ’ll always end up getting them. The format for the show is a brief stand-up spot from Herring, followed by a chat with his first guest (in this case the highly underrated Glen Wool), and ending with a short routine from a second guest (today, the ever unpredictable Simon Munnery).

As fans of Herring will know, his podcasts have a tendency to very quickly become highly self-reflexive, often to the point of excluding the occasional listener. Happily thereÂ’s no such problem today, with Herring resisting any mystifying intra-show continuity, beyond the usual echoing of the showÂ’s unpronounceable acronym. HerringÂ’s opening material is chucklesome if a little shaky, though his typically scatological interactions with the front row soon get the laughter flowing.

An odd statement it may sound, but when joined by Wool, Herring shines. Partly based on their experiences of Edinburgh festivals past, the pairÂ’s interactions manage to be both hilarious and poignant, with HerringÂ’s raucous mock-immaturity perfectly tempered by WoolÂ’s swift, almost pragmatic wit. The hilarity is sustained impressively through engaging digressions into punching teenagers, unidentifiable STDs, and the pressures of touring, before Munnery takes the stage for a wonderful final five minutes of mind-bending one-liners and bizarre chanting. Though today Herring is not at his magnificent best, he is still one of the most consistently enjoyable comedians out there, and, with such a marvellous series of comedians lined up for future podcasts, this afternoon delight is highly recommended.